“The Conjuring 2” Review
Written and Directed by James Wan
Three years after the first film’s inception, The Conjuring 2 arrives with a fresh new face. A Marilyn Manson, demon general kind of face. And if you think the first one was scary…
Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga reprises their roles as professional demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren, permanently cementing their reputation as scream king and queen (with Patrick in the starring role of Insidious, which incidentally is also directed by James Wan, and Vera in Orphan, you can see it’s becoming a trend).
The film begins with a glimpse of the Warrens’ most notorious paranormal investigation to date: the Amityville Haunting. Since Lorraine is the clairvoyant one, she gets herself into a trance to enter the realm beyond our world. And the vision she sees is not too jolly.
James Wan, a director so well versed in the subtle art of making your sleep less peaceful, wanted the film to have a connection to Amityville regardless of the limitations due to film rights. Set in 1977, our power couple is tasked to investigate an occurrence east of the Atlantic, two years after the Amityville case. The Warrens are called in to look into a seemingly supernatural disturbance in Enfield, where Peggy Hodgson’s (Frances O’Connor) youngest daughter Janet (Madison Wolfe) seem to be troubled by an entity unknown to them all.
As usual, typical horror flicks try to associate themselves to a supposedly real event to make the story even more compelling, but Wan made sure the material he was making is still something that’ll show the creativity of him and his writing team. If the real events that occurred in Enfield involved a poltergeist, Wan introduces a rock star, another face (reminiscent of his film Insidious’ Red Demon) to remember during cold nights alone, when the nights are out. This new demon, as it turns out, is some hotshot back in hell, and powerful enough to push the Warrens to the very limits of their faith and abilities. One other special mention is The Crooked Man, an entity created by the demon that’s based of a nursery rhyme. If you think that’s tame, just wait until the film’s cinematography transform everything he is into something more horrifyingly spectacular. Macabre at its finest.
Speaking of faith, Wan carries on the presentation of Ed and Lorraine warren as not psychics with special powers, or a simple obsession to the supernatural, but a couple bound and obligated by their relentless faith to help other people rid themselves from the influence of dark forces. With a crucifix necklace and a bible in tow, the Warrens go ahead and proclaim the love of Jesus Christ, which apparently makes even the most hardcore of demons sick in the face, condemning them back to hell where they came from. Sweet.
The Conjuring 2 has made itself a classic by proving that some old tricks of the trade can be made new and refreshed, and that making sure you cast the right actors is the best investment you can ever make in a film. Well, besides an excellent writing team. Wilson and Vermiga’s chemistry is impeccable, and if there ever will be a sequel, I still expect them to deliver.